John Kunkel

Sound Design/Mixing/Mastering

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39 Reviews (34 Verified)
John Kunkel on SoundBetter

Sound Designer (full time @ Splice), music producer, mixing engineer, and songwriter based in Los Angeles, California specializing in various electronic music genres, with a focus on Melodic House, Pop/Edm, Progressive House, Trance, Melodic Techno, Retrowave/Synthwave, and Darkwave.

I've worked as a producer, mix engineer, musician, performer, songwriter and touring artist for over 15 years. I've had the pleasure of being a full-time sound-designer for Splice, Sample Magic, a sync writer for West One Music, Dynamic Music, Spiritune and many. You might also recognize me from The New Division where I produce, song-write, and sing, or John Grand where I deliver quality progressive house and melodic house releases, supported by Above & Beyond, Armin Van Buuren, and many more.
- Sound Design: Need a unique set of sounds for your favorite VST? I've worked with countless clients delivering unique bespoke synth presets.
- Production: If you have a song, even with the simplest idea, but need it to sound amazing, be arranged in a structure that will captivate your audience, send it over and I'd love to help you bring the song to life.
- Songwriting: I offer my writing abilities to bring your craft to its full completion.
- Mixing: Attention to detail is everything - with my mixing services, I offer a wide range of mixing needs - whether you are seeking for pristine, crowd-ready dance tunes, high-quality pop productions, or lo-fi aesthetics for more left-leaning productions.
- Mastering: As with mixing, mastering is a delicate process that brings your final mixes ready for your audience to hear. I also do Vinyl mastering!

Send me a note through the contact button above.

Credits

Discogs verified credits for The New Division
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  • By An Ion & Timecop1983
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39 Reviews - 11 Repeat Clients

Endorse John Kunkel
  1. Review by Sameet A.
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    Killed it with my custom Diva presets. Seriously in love with these epic sounds!

  2. Review by Sameet A.
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    John is a sound design wizard. Need help looking for your unique sound? John is the guy for you. Excited to work with him going forward!

  3. Review by Josh
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    by Josh
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    I approached John to master an 80's style synth ballad. I could not be happier with the results! I'll be returning with future productions.

  4. Review by SkyQode
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    Another top remix delivered. Highly recommended!

  5. Review by Karl G.
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    Thank you, brother
    -Legacy FM

  6. Review by fromapestoangels
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    Top work and good feedback given to get things sounding great

  7. Review by Angelo Bavaro Producer
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    John was a pleasure to work with. I listened to his works, and I've completely fallen in love with his music. I contacted John for a master: he is a very professional person and, at the same time, he is empathetic. John immediately understood how I wanted my work and, once he have finished it, I listened to it and I loved it at the first listening. All right, John, here's to working together again.

  8. Review by Andy
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    John did a great remix job for us. I'm sure to come back for more remixes in future. Very professional, highly recommended!

  9. Review by Miguel Cruz
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    I needed help with mastering for an 80s style dance track and I couldn't be happier with the results from John. The tracks sound amazing and I'm so happy they're ready for release now. Thanks for all your help John. Will keep you in mind for future projects.

  10. Review by Nicholas A.
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    John is amazing. He works in ableton and FL Studio almost effortlessly. He is a master of production, editing, mixing, mastering, sound design. He has patience and is thorough. He understands when less is more. He does not rush. He will inform you of his preferred work flow and I recommend following that carefully as it benefits the artist; he knows what he is doing. I will work with him as much as possible.

  11. Review by Ryan R.
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    John is a mix wizard!!! Some have said he is the "Dumbledore of the DAW" and I can't help but agree. His studio is tricked out with all the analog and digital tools you'll need for a fresh, club-ready, mix and master. The vocals, bass, and drums all stand out crisp and he understands how to make the tracks ready for Spotify, Vinyl, etc. Super efficient, great to work with. 11/10

  12. Review by Klaus S.
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    It's the 2nd time John remixed a SEA OF SIN track for us. And it's a stunning Remix again, we could not be happier with the result. Top job, highly recommended!

  13. Review by Michael E.
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    John was very professional and responsive and helped bring my song to life. Would definitely recommend him and use him again!

  14. Review by Craig C.
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    John did a great job on on the mix and production of my synthwave track. Very pleased with the final result, and would definitely work with him again

  15. Review by Mike B.
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    John knows his stuff! He was super patient with me as we did several revisions. He also had some great advice for a newer producer.

  16. Review by Color T.
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    John is an amazing producer. I hired him for a remix, and he knocked it out of the park! It's easy to tell when a remixer is phoning it in, but this is anything but. The arrangement continues to grow and evolve throughout the duration of the track, and reaches a heavy climax in his characteristic style. I can't recommend him highly enough.

  17. Review by Mike B.
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    Super easy to work with John and he was invaluable in helping point out a few things that needed adjusted in my mix. The finished product was fantastic!

  18. Review by Philipp K.
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    John is an excellent mastering engineer. He really brought our synthwave song to life and we could not be happier with the result. Highly recommended.

  19. Review by David F.
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    John works well with active feedback and his keen understanding gets you to the sound you're looking for. My go to guy.

  20. Review by Conrad S.
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    I've always loved John's work, but it wasn't until we worked together this first time, that I discovered how incredible he is as a producer. John is a lightning fast, expert level, knowledgable and most importantly made our track shine with depth and energy. I've worked with other producers before and it's such an intimate experience to help translate your ideas into the material form of your vision. Thank you sincerely.

Interview with John Kunkel

  1. Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?

  2. A: All of my sample packs on Sample Magic and Splice - I'm very proud of all I've accomplished over the last 10 years.

  3. Q: What are you working on at the moment?

  4. A: Several projects related to sound design, scoring, and as always, on my main project, The New Division.

  5. Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?

  6. A: It depends on the style, but I do know some people I'd recommend.

  7. Q: Analog or digital and why?

  8. A: Both are great, but I primarily work in the digital realm for about 90% of the time. The other 10% (analog) is only used when I'm doing bus-processing (drums/bass/vocals) or for mastering.

  9. Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?

  10. A: If I do not deliver what you're looking for, you're more than welcome to give me another try or I'd be happy to recommend someone who can deliver what you need.

  11. Q: What do you like most about your job?

  12. A: I enjoy taking a track from a 5 to a 10 in terms of mixing and mastering.

  13. Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?

  14. A: It varies from client to client, but often times customers want to know how they should deliver their files. Answer: 24-bit WAV is always preferred in terms of formatting. You're also free to deliver a DAW session, but in this scenario its important to advise on what plugins are used. I work on PC (Windows) so I cannot work with AU plugins.

  15. Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?

  16. A: Often times people will confuse "producing" with "mixing". Production is the process of sequencing, arranging, and sound design that goes before the mixing process. Mixing is the process whereby we ensure proper gain staging, and sonic clarity of the overall mix. For clarification purposes, "mastering" is the final stage where we ensure your track is ready for distribution. This can, but not always include, stereo imaging correction, limiting, master equalization, and adding sheen to your mix.

  17. Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?

  18. A: - How many tracks does your song have? - What musical references do you want your song to sound like? - When do you need work delivered by? - What formats would you like your work delivered in? - What DAW are you using? - Has everything been labeled properly for ease of use on my end? - What do you wish to accomplish with the final mix?

  19. Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?

  20. A: Don't be afraid to reach out - I might not always be available but you can try to reach me at another time for your project.

  21. Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?

  22. A: Power generator, laptop, interface, headphones, and a lot of coffee.

  23. Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?

  24. A: I have been producing, mixing and mastering for over 10 years. I've also been a sound designer for the same amount of time, working on over 80 packs for Sample Magic, and Splice. I also love synth sound design, and have created over 20 synth banks for Serum, Massive, Sylenth1, Spire, Astra, and many more.

  25. Q: How would you describe your style?

  26. A: Laid-back, easy-going and happy to collaborate on projects where the client and I understand what the vision for their track.

  27. Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?

  28. A: Jon Hopkins - he's a very talented producer/musician and has a forward-thinking approach to creating something beautiful.

  29. Q: Can you share one music production tip?

  30. A: Always leave some headroom for your mixing engineers. This will not only translate into a better mix, but will leave you with plenty of space to add depth into your final mix.

  31. Q: What type of music do you usually work on?

  32. A: Chillwave, Indie/Electronic, Synthwave, Progressive House, Progressive Trance, Darkwave, Post-Punk.

  33. Q: What's your strongest skill?

  34. A: Mixing, Mastering and ability to understand the clients

  35. Q: What do you bring to a song?

  36. A: Depth, energy and power to a mix/master.

  37. Q: What's your typical work process?

  38. A: + I like to work with projects that are almost or near finished (but also am happy to work on projects that are nowhere near the finish line), require final touches on both mixing and mastering. I prefer not to do a lot of extra production (synth and drum re-programming), however I'm always able to consider doing any extra production if need be. + Organized and properly labeled files / projects are a plus. + Mixes / Masters for one track can be finished with the day depending on client's deadline requirements. + I love it when clients send musical references of how they want their tracks to sound like.

  39. Q: Tell us about your studio setup.

  40. A: Monitoring: Focal Twin6be + Focal Sub Headhpones: Audeze LCD-MX4 Interface: UAD APollo Twin (Black Lion Audio Mod) Outboard Gear: Shadow Hills Dual Vandergraph, Neve 1073, Rupert Neve 542 (Stereo) DAW: Ableton Live, FL Studio, Cubase, Pro Tools, Bitwig, Wavelab Plugins: Fab Filter Collection, Plugin Alliance Collection, UAD (various plugins), and much more.

  41. Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?

  42. A: Com Truise, Above & Beyond, M83, Eric Prydz, CHVRCHES

  43. Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.

  44. A: Mixing, Mastering, and some producing.

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John Grand

I was the Producer, Mixer in this production

Terms Of Service

I always have unlimited FREE revisions! We will keep working until the track is 100%. I will always do my best to work within any budget and I will provide incredible radio ready quality production.

Gear Highlights
  • Focal Twin 6be
  • Universal Audio Apollo Quad
  • Neve 542s
  • Shadow Hills Dual Vandergraph
  • Prophet 5
  • Ob6
  • Juno 106
  • Roland JX-3P
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